tv The Rachel Maddow Show MSNBC August 9, 2011 1:00am-2:00am PDT
afternoon, filling in for martin bashir at 3:00 p.m. eastern. i will be glued toe temperature the rachel maddow show is next. thanks to you at home for staying with us for the next hour. i actually want to start off tonight with a shout out to the newmont mining corporation of denver colorado, exceptional work today, newmont mining corporation, a standout performance, literally, their performance today as an american company stands out. cnbc does this thing every day called a heat map, we talked about this last week, they take the 500 biggest, most actively traded companies on the stock market, the s&p 500, and they create a map of them showing basically how the overall day went for those 500 companies. if the company gets labeled as green, that means they had a good day, their stock price went up, if they are labeled as red,
it means their stock price went down. you can see the heat map here, on the left side of the screen. that's what the heat map on cnbc looks like on a typical stock market day. we haven't had a typical stock market day in awhile so we had a go awhile back in time to find this example. again, this is a normal day on the heat map. this is what the heat map looked like on what was not a normal day. here's what the heat map looked like today. oh, boy. remember, red means i had a bad day. wait, what -- right over, far corner, what's that up there? quadrant 72 or something, out of the 500 dots, there was one green dot today in the entire s&p 500 on the heat map, one company had one good day, and that was newmont mining corporation of denver, colorado. they were the one company that was doing okay today, one minute before the closing bell, so good job, newmont mining corporation.
i should note, however, by the time the market did close, newmont mining corporation of denver, colorado, was also down by 28 cents. so one minute after they were the only green dot on the heat map of 500 dots, their dot went red too. so what's the better visualization tool for how things went today? the entire s&p 500 heat map turning red like this? not even an isolated pinpoint of green anywhere around to make us feel a little better. is this the best visual metaphor for today or is this the best visual metaphor for today? the percentage drop in the s&p 500 today was, look at the bottom number there on the right, 6.66%. seriously. 6.66%. 666. just in case the number gods were not being clearer, it had to be 666. even if you don't care about details about how and why this was a bad today, if all you can stomach absorbing the devil horns and red screen, i am trying to imply this went badly.
even if you're not interested in how it was bad, there's one important detail that's worth absorbing. if you absorb no other detail other than this, here's the detail to understand, while everybody was selling off all of these stocks today, what were they buying? they were selling every stock they could get anywhere near, what did they buy? they bought u.s. treasury bonds. the u.s. treasury bond is you loaning the united states money in exchange for a promise from the united states the country will pay you back with interest. that's the only thing that got bought today, that and gold. our friends at newmont mining corporation happen to be one of the largest gold miners. other than gold, u.s. treasury bonds. everybody in the market fleeing
to the security of the full faith and credit of the united states of america. the tectonic thing that happened in american finance and also in american politics over the last three days is that a ratings agency, standard & poors, said don't buy u.s. treasury bonds. standard & poor's said if you loan money to the united states, we are less sure than we used to be the country will pay you back. the whole point of the downgrade was to say the u.s. treasury essentially can no longer be trusted. the market responded by giving the u.s. treasury all of their money. >> it's kind of hard to sell treasuries when you have a market meltdown here. the fight to quality is still the u.s. treasuries, it's the best thing out there. >> flight to quality. best thing out there. that was also what president obama was talking about today in his mid afternoon statement on the markets at the white house. >> on friday, we learned that the united states received a
downgrade by one of the credit rating agencies. the markets, on the other hand, continue to believe our credit status is aaa, in fact, warren buffet, who knows a thing or two about good investments said if there were a aaaa rating, i'd give the united states that. i and most of the world's investors agree. >> the whole assertion of the u.s. credit rating downgrade is that if you lend america money, america may no lopger be -- may no longer be good for it. people should think twice about loaning the u.s. money. people shouldn't be treasury bills anymore because america might not pay it back. nobody, nobody believes that is true. >> this is not an issue of credit rating. there is zero probability of default. >> zero chance we are not going to lend back people money buying treasury bills. zero chance. nobody disagrees with alan greenspan on that. the market knows that.
they showed it today. and frankly the s&p ratings agency knows that, too. the agency that downgraded the u.s. credit rating friday night sent over to the obama administration their press release explaining the downgrade they were about to do. this is the draft. we have the draft. this is the draft press release. this is not the final version, this is the early version that was obtained by politico,.com, we have a link to it on our website. the spoiler alert here if you read this is that the math here is wrong by $2 trillion. what they were initially going to use as their justification for downgrading the u.s. credit score was math that was really, really wrong, math that said, for example, that the u.s. didn't deserve to be alongside a country like france in having a aaa credit rating because our debt problem was so much worse than france's. once their math problem was pointed out to them that we're not in a worse situation than frce justification altogether and decided to downgrade us anyway. this doesn't really have
anything to do with the math. this doesn't have anything to do with numbers, they are not even making an assertion our credit is any substantially worse than we used to be. that we're any less likely to pay back our borrowers than we used to be. they are not making a numerical argument, they are not making a financial argument. they are doing political punditry, they are indicting political brinksmanship in washington. the bizarre flirtation with the default this year. the cult of intractability that exists on one side of the aisle in washington now. >> the political gridlock in washington leads us to conclude that policy makers don't have the ability to proactively, you know, put the public finances of the u.s. on a sustainable footing. >> why downgrade the debt when it's actually about the political process? >> the political process becomes important, because that speaks to how this fiscal and economic and monetary choices are being made.
that influences the trade worthiness. >> if you corrected the political settings, that would certainly improve the credit standing of the united states. >> it is kind of weird for a ratings agency to make its executives available for these kinds of interviews, to explain their rational this much, but the more they explain, the clearer is comes this isn't about the particular calculation about the amount of debt. they don't even seem to care their math was wildly, wildly wrong on that. what they are doing here is about politics. no, we're not going to default because of anything wrong with our economic ability to repay our debts. the only reason we even flirted with default earlier this month, and we did get close to it, only reason we got close to it was not because of anything economic, but it has become fashionable in republican politics to threaten that the united states should default. once the debt ceiling deal was reached, the top republican in the senate, mitch mcconnell, described defaulting on our debt as a "hostage that's worth ransoming."
he described it as a template for how things would go forward. what we have done is set a new template. in the future it will not be clean anymore. whoever the new president is, it's probably going to be asking us to raise the debt ceiling again, then we will go through the process again and see what we continue to achieve in connection with these debt ceiling requests." that is not some tea party fringe member pressuring. the leader of the senate republicans. that is the leader of the senate republicans. saying you like getting within hours of defaulting? well, get used to it. we're going to keep doing that whenever we can. of all of the republican presidential candidates this year, all of them but one, all of them but jon huntsman, said they'd vote against raising the debt ceiling, meaning that as presidential candidates they are advising members of congress to vote against raising the debt ceiling. they are advising congress to let the united states of america default.
members of congress, who in some cases seemed they'd be delighted to do that. republican congress quoted this week -- saying "we are not kidding around, we would have taken it down." by "it," he means you, the u.s. economy. we wanted it to go nuclear. if we are talking about the risk of default, if we are talking about playing with fire, this is not a both sides kind of thing. the beltway loves to say both sides deserve the blame, this is the platonic form of not both sides fault. i'm sorry if this sounds partisan to point it out but this is not both sides with the same error. this was republicans alone causing this problem by saying they would not raise the debt ceiling. and it is liberals and democrats who have been saying all along that this take by the republicans was dangerous. that's why it's frankly weird to be a liberal pundit reading the s&p press release about
republicans behaving dangerously in washington, the reason s&p downgraded the u.s. credit score was essentially the list of liberal and democratic talking points against the republican congress taking the debt ceiling hostage. this sounds like it's straight off an msnbc teleprompter. "the political brinksmanship of recent months highlights what we see as america's governance and policy making becoming less stable and effective. the statutory debt ceiling and the threat of default have become political bargaining chips in the debate over fiscal policy. that is what s&p said. that's their press release. what they said was the reason for the downgrade. the chairman of s&p's sovereign ratings committee told "the wall street journal" it involved a level of leadership greater than what we had expected. this is not both sides. i'm sorry to tell the beltway. i know it's upsetting. this was not both sides. liberals and democrats have been saying what republicans have been doing is dangerous for months now.
knowing republicans would not listen to any liberal or democrat saying that, liberal democrats even drafted the ghost of ronald reagan to try to make the argument for them, please, listen to reagan even if you won't listen to us. don't do this to the country. still, the response from congressional republicans was essentially no, we want to burn it down, and they very nearly did, and now the people that sell fire insurance are making us pay more for our fire insurance policy because it turns out there's an arsonist in our family. the market dropped today not because the u.s. isn't going to pay back the people buying treasury bills, in that case, people would not have bought so many. darn treasury bills today. that's not why the market tanked. the market tanked today, that cnbc heat map looked the way it did today. we had the sixth worst day in terms of point drops today because the global economy is in bad shape, europe particularly and the u.s. economy is in bad shape and it doesn't look like the u.s. will get better fast enough to help ourselves, let alone offer help to the rest of the world.
we really, really, really need some american jobs. we really need policy to create american jobs. the fear you are seeing in the american markets is fear about whether or not we are capable of fixing that problem that we have as a country. what got sold off today was mostly stock in private companies and people ran for cover away from private companies. and to the security of the government. the government now needs to prove itself worthy of that faith. the government needs to prove itself capable of fixing our real economic problems. and right now, i know it sounds partisan, but believe it. one side in our politics really is trying to set the whole thing on fire. and the other side is left to figure out not only how to stop to stop them from doing that, but also how to find enough nonarsonists on that side of the aisle to participate in building something that will work for the country, right now and fast. this sort of counts as an
man, we give out so many car insurance discounts. safe driver discount, homeowner's discount... multi-car discount. i wish we could get discounts everywhere. body like a greek god discount at the gym. best moves discount at the disco. you guys are so funny. really? best actress discount. uncalled for discount. whatever discount. [ female announcer ] tons of discounts. see for yourself at esurance. technology when you want it. people when you don't. a very bad day on the financial markets as you hear the closing bell on wall street. >> every single major index has closed to the negative. >> s&p 500 shellacked, people, 6% in one day. >> hey, washington, welcome to your double-a hole. >> what a day it has been.
the market closes at the lows of the afternoon. >> the last time we saw such a drop in the dow was november 20, 2008, a time none of us would like to return to. >> yeah, we're pretty much there at this point. >> we knew from the outset that a long debate over the debt ceiling, a debate where the threat of default was used as a bargaining chip could do enormous damage to our economy and the world's. that threat, coming after a string of economic disruptions in europe, japan and the middle east has now royaled the markets and dampened consumer confidence and slowed the space of the recovery. >> joining us now, congressman barney frank from massachusetts, congressman frank, thanks very much for your time tonight, i appreciate it. >> welcome, thank you. >> when we spoke friday after we learned about the downgrade, you said taking standard & poor's seriously is not something rational people ought to do, the market tanked today but did not follow s&p's advice, everybody
bought u.s. treasury bonds. what explains that? >> well, the market is, to a certain extent, a hall of mirrors. reality gets displaced by people's perception of reality, and i'm not surprised. i said that people shouldn't pay attention to standard & poor's, and, you know, the rating agencies presumably bring to the table specialized knowledge. where they were supposed to be doing that with mortgage-backed securities, they screwed it up badly. they admit. they told people this was wonderful stuff when it was crap and didn't check it. everybody knows everything. i'm disappointed but not surprised. but the key, i think we have to get some jobs and deal with the debt and there's one way to do it. we are today spending $140 billion a year approximately on afghanistan and iraq to no good purpose. iraq was always a mistake, in
any my judgment. afghanistan started out with a reasonable possibility. it has deteriorated. we defend western europe against nonexistent threats. i want america to be strong and able to defend itself, but i don't want us to take on the job of policing every political dispute everywhere in the world. we could reduce our military spending by $250 billion a year, 140 billion from the iraq and afghanistan wars, and over 100 billion in western europe, japan and other wealthy nations and bring that money home. we could use half of it to bring down the deficit and half to produce jobs. there are today 600,000 fewer local employees, public works employees, people who shovel the know and pick up garbage, police officers, firefighters because we have sent the money overseas in ways that is useful. i want to help fight poverty and aids but now we have to say to our friends on the other side who say we must cut spending, don't tell me to tell a
78-year-old woman living on $19,000 a year she gets no cost of living where you will continue to pour money in to coffers. at this point, i agree with your analysis of how we got here. but now we can say to some of the people who helped us to get here. okay, let's bring a couple hundred billion dollars of home that is spent overseas in unconstructive ways and that's what we need to do to get jobs. instead of putting the money in to kandahar and kabul and baghdad where it is not used well, let's put it in to our cities and highway construction and putting people back to work here. >> there's been a lot of coverage, recently speaking, of an emerging split among republicans on that, on the issue of defense spending and whether or not the pentagon might be a place where they could stand some cuts. there's been less coverage of whether or not democrats are unified around that idea. how much support do you think
you have from the white house and other congressional democrats? >> from the white house i'm worried about. that on the congressional democrats, i offered an amendment to cut by a substantial amount the increase to the pentagon. the democrats voight voted with me on that amendment 154-546789 the republicans voted against it. we got 60 or 70. ron paul has been good on this. other republicans, but my problem is the president and i strongly support him and i will, but i'm appalled to read to read he is thinking of exceeding to an iraqi request that we stay in iraq longer than george bush wanted to and leon panetta who is a great liberal and concerned about the budget when he was in congress has bought in to the notion that more and more and more is important to the pentagon even if it goes beyond legitimate expense needs and he said the other day and i was disappointed and wrote to the president said, say it ain't so, joe, barack. he said let's cut entitlements
and not the military. let's be clear about taxes. it is not revenue it is taxes. i want to go back to the clinton tax rates for people in the top 2%. here's what we are proposing. if you make more than $250,000 in income after your deductions f you make more than $250,000 a year in taxable income, for every $1,000 additional you make, i want to tax you $30. $30 on every thousand above 250. if we do that, we pull out of iraq and afghanistan, we can start on a better path to reducing the deficit. we have to do some restraints elsewhere. we don't have to cut old ladies who are living on $19,000. we don't have to make people who stood on their feet working hard work a few more years. the irony is we are subsidizing the military budgets of western europe. none of them pay a percentage of
their gross domestic product to the military like we do so they can give their people better health and retirement and benefits than we do. but some of the tea party theory. maybe it is the stop clock theory. it is right twice a day. many perceive this against the established republicans, the john mccain, dick cheney position. we have been making progress. this is our moment. if we cannot at this point, when we are told we are in a crisis. when the stock market is tanking, when we are unfairly downgraded by s&p but the fact is it is out there. when there is a panic about the need to make substantial deficit reduction, to spend $100 billion a year in the corruption of afghanistan and iraq and deny that to debt reduction and job creation here is the definition of stupidity. >> congressman frank of massachusetts, everybody thinks
that you are so far on the left of the democratic caucus you would say stuff that would never appeal to republicans and every time you talk about stuff that will appeal to republicans. >> i'm working with several republicans and i will continue to do it. i will hang out with anyone if it gets something done right. >> appreciate it. we'll be right back.
politics. tomorrow's elections are recall elections against six republican state senators who sided with wisconsin governor scott walker on his stripping of union rights in that state. democratic state senators taking a stand against that, electrified the democrat base leading to protests like these all through the spring. that energy has been converted into the recall effort for tomorrow. if democrats end up controlling three more seats after these recalls than they did before the recalls, they will take back the senate from the republican party's control. it is not at all a sure bet that democrats will be able to do that. it's fairly impossible to make predictions here, there's no precedent for a recall like this in wisconsin. it will, of course, come down to organization and enthusiasm and get out the vote efforts, it will come down to turnout, and msnbc's ed schultz will be broadcasting live tonight from madison where a crowd is already gathering for him and he'll be there live tomorrow as well. ed schultz, on the ground for the state senate recall
on saturday morning, word first crossed the wires about a single incident in afghanistan with an almost unimaginable american toll. the helicopter carrying 30 americans, 7 afghan commandos and an interpreter were killed. of the 30 americans killed, 22 were navy s.e.a.l.s. this crash is the single deadliest incident for americans in afghanistan since the war began nearly ten years ago. we do not know all the names of the men killed, and is complicated, but we are starting to learn more about the 30 americans killed thanks in large coverage to their hometown newspapers. we have links to reports out of arkansas and rockford, ohio, shreveport, louisiana, jacksonville, north carolina, cape cod, massachusetts.
we linked to some of these at our blog, maddowblog.com. this is the single deadliest incident for americans in the entire decade of this war. the taliban, of course, took credit within hours of the attack, but that doesn't always mean much. according to u.s. officials, it was a rocket propelled grenade but more details are unknown. this is a twin helicopter caring are the americans and afghans that was on its way to a mission apparently targeting a taliban leader. the chinook helicopter was hit before reaching those rangers, and those rangers were the first to secure the crash site. joining us live from afghanistan, richard engle, up
at an ungodly hour to be with us tonight. richard, thanks so much for joining us, appreciate it. >> it's a pleasure, and it is, i think, a very important story. not just for the loss of life, which is in itself very tragic, but it says a lot about the war itself and how it's going, that ten years, nearly ten years on, you can have the single deadliest incident that would involve so many of these elite troops. i think it says a lot about where this country is going and where the u.s. mission is going as well. >> richard, what do we know about the mission that resulted in the crash, the specific mission, and why so many elite troops were involved in this. what does it say to you? >> effectively, you had a mission underway by the army rangers, and this is not the people who go to ranger school who wear the tab on the uniform, this is the 75th ranger regiment, which itself is an elite group that operates covertly and does a lot of the deadly missions in this country and other countries around the
world. the ranger regimen was operating on this mission, hunting a taliban leader or several leaders of the taliban in the tangi valley. it is about of 60 miles southwest of here, very remote, steep sides, loose shale, you can't really drive into it, lots of footpaths, they were in this valley, came across several taliban fighters, leaders, people carrying rggs, they engaged them and then at some stage of the fire fight, they called for backup. the reenforcements who arrived, you have special forces calling in even more special forces because the reenforcements that arrived were mostly these navy s.e.a.l.s, and as they were landing to try and provide more fire power and more support,
that's when this chinook helicopter or transport helicopter, a very vulnerable, big, slow transport helicopter, was hit from the ground. the taliban says it brought the helicopter down and the u.s. military isn't disputing that. >> in terms of the way the taliban brought it down, is it -- what about the means by which it was brought down, does this seem to you it was a lucky shot with a low-tech weapon that doesn't often have the chance of doing this or does this say something about advanced tactics and weaponry? lucky shot? >> mostly a lucky shot. no change in weaponry, this is an old weapon, not nothing that's been developed for this conflict. it's not just like they got stinger missiles. it was a shot. the effective range for an rpg is really about 150 yards, so it's not an accurate weapon, it's not a guided rocket, it's
just you point it and you shoot it at something and at a very low altitude when chinooks are coming in, and they are turning in particular, they create a very broad target, and this one just happened to hit the chinook and bring it down, killing everyone on board. >> richard, a toll like this is the sort of thing that brings the nation's attention back to the afghanistan war. whether this was a strategically significant mission or not, it's got everybody talking about the war again. i know you've been in and out of afghanistan many times, where do you think the u.s. is strategically right now in terms of our overall reason for being there? >> i think we're in a very weak position, and i think that's going back to why this story is so important beyond the terrible and really significant loss of life, because these aren't -- these aren't just soldiers, and it's always an awkward position to say one person's life is more valuable than another and you can never make that judgment.
it's a moral call, but strategically and tactically, these soldiers have an incredible -- these navy s.e.a.l.s have an incredible amount of training and experience that is lost and that is something that doesn't get regenerated quickly, but on a larger scale, what does it mean for afghanistan and what does it mean for the u.s. involvement here, the success in the midst of a transition, the u.s. is drawing back some solders right now. we're supposedly ending this surge starting this summer and then starting this summer and fall and then going on to next year, and the problem is the afghan government isn't filling in the gaps, isn't stepping up and taking control of areas, so you're seeing the u.s. trying to draw back but the afghan government not stepping up and it's creating a situation where afghanistan is getting even more dangerous, there's more chaos,
and it's going to be a problem as the u.s. further intensifies it's draw downs this year, next year, and after that. >> richard engel, live from kabul, afghanistan, on zero sleep. thank you so much for joining us tonight. i got medicare card, i realized i needed an aarp... medicare supplement insurance card, too. medicare is one of the great things about turning 65, but it doesn't cover everything. in fact, it only pays up to 80% of your part b expenses. if you're already on or eligible for medicare, call now to find out how an aarp... medicare supplement insurance plan, insured by unitedhealthcare insurance company, helps cover some of the medical expenses... not paid by medicare part b. that can save you from paying up to thousands of dollars... out of your own pocket. these are the only medicare supplement insurance plans... exclusively endorsed by aarp. when you call now, you'll get this free information kit...
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that was the night wisconsin governor scott walker's stripping of union rights in the state of wisconsin got suddenly shoved through the state assembly. that happened after 1:00 a.m. of february 25th this year. tonight marks the punctuation mark of that sentence, recall elections inspired by the stand off over union rights begin when polls open 7:00 a.m. local time in wisconsin tomorrow. nobody in the national media covered the wisconsin story earlier, more thoroughly, more urgently, or any better than msnbc's own ed schultz. live tonight on recall election eve is mr. schultz himself, who
is live in madison. ed, it's great to see you. thanks for making this time tonight, my friend. >> rachel, it's an honor to be on with you tonight, i think we really are in the eye of the storm for the fight for the middle class of the country, tomorrow is going to be a benchmark day, no question about it. >> i hear the enthusiasm of the folks gathered behind you. this is sort of an unprecedented situation in terms of this many recalls, this time of year coming out of this kind of an environment in wisconsin. the polls seem close, everything seems unpredictable, from what you are hearing on the ground, what are you expecting to happen in tomorrow's elections? >> well, i think there's going to be a tremendous turnout tomorrow, something that wisconsin's never been through before, this is uncharted territory, there are polls that are all over the place, but there is a real air of confidence among the progressive movement tonight, and there's a real air of confidence amongst those supporting senator walker, scott fitzgerald told "the new
york times" they'd maintain the majority here in the senate in wisconsin, no doubt about it. so you got these two titans, this ideological struggle that's going to be played out tomorrow for the entire country to see. it's the best of america and in the eyes of some, it's the worst of america. the obstructionism that's taken place has brought us to this point and i think it's something for the entire country to see, i think this is the eye of the storm for the fight for the middle class in america, what happens here if scott walker's republicans win and if they maintain the majority, the question is, how does the progressive movement move forward in ohio to recall senate bill 5? what does this do for the confidence for those under middle class attack in the state of michigan? i think tomorrow is a huge day for the progressive movement in this country. >> how do you think, ed, that the national political situation right now is affecting what
might happen tomorrow? we've got, obviously, the white knuckle hostage situation over the debt ceiling, tanking of the markets, president's response to it. are those national winds blowing in wisconsin affecting their own state's politics on a night like tonight? >> rachel, i think what happened in the market today is a great motivator to progressives across the country, because a lot of middle classers, a lot of low income people got hurt today. rich people didn't get hurt today, they move their money all the time. i had a well-placed wall streeter tell me wall street can't stand this president and they don't want to see him succeed no matter what he does for them. the fact of the matter is the agenda for the republicans has been to slow the economy, make the election part of the economy, wall street is part of that, and i just think president obama is facing a landscape of obstructionism that no other president has ever had to face. he's got a deck of cards in
front of him that i don't think any president has to deal back to the american people. this is tough, tough politics being played out, and the one thing that i keep hearing here in wisconsin is they can't take your heart, they can't take your soul, and they can't take your vote, and there's going to be a big turnout tomorrow. some on the republican side say as much as 70% in these six districts. if that's the case, that would certainly parallel what took place in 2010, and i also think, rachel, that we are seeing citizens united play out on paper in a big way. in the midterms in 2010 on the state level, in the state races in wisconsin, less than $4 million was spent. we're now pushing $40 million on six selected races in the recall. i mean, this is money we've never seen before in the heartland, so it is going to be a day for america to watch, no question about it.
>> ed, turning the telescope around, one of the things you and i have talked about so many times over the months and years, frankly, is whether or not what's going on in wisconsin resinates nationally, whether or not national and d.c. democrats know that there is a democratic base. they look at wisconsin and recognize there is political game to be gained by respecting and standing up for your base. do you think d.c. democrats get it the way wisconsin democrats do? >> i do not. i do not. i think there's a real disconnect, and i think that you are going to see people come to the polls tomorrow concerned about the kitchen table issues. they are tired of the obstructionism that is taking place and the rankering that's taking place in washington. this is a chance for them to show their voice that they don't want the corporate tax breaks that walker has put out, they don't want more taxes put on the middle class and more hardship put on people with fixed incomes.
that's why this is so big, this is a microcosm of what the national conversation has been, and if the democrats don't show up big tomorrow, it could be really tough for 2012. >> ed schultz, msnbc's own, ed, i could not be happier you are exactly where you are right now, thank you for being there. the biggest story in the news is the economic crisis. beyond that, there's a lot else going on including incredible footage we are getting from the rioting in london. we have big news in u.s. presidential politics that broke. that's coming up next.
when a huge important story like the economic crisis takes up all the oxygen in the room, it that has unfortunate side effect of squelching most coverage of most other news even if it's quite important as well. say the riots raging in london for the third day running. it started saturday night in north london. a protest against a police shooting turned violent. torching police cars. residents telling "the new york times" there were twounder lying reasons for it.
by sunday, the second day the violence spread to other neighborhoods, further north where looters attacked stores and it traveled south where 200 people targeted the high street there. by this evening, police in east london. rioters torched buses. firefighters battle the huge blaze at a furniture store in south london. they are accused of rioting in camden, nodding hill and south london. the violence spreading to smaller cities in britain. police arrested looters. the prime minister of britain, the mayor of london and the home secretary have all been on vacation for the start of the rioting. they are all heading back from or are back from their holidays now trying to get the situation
under control. we partner with the news agency, i tv. they have put together tootage of the rioting in london. we put up their best reports at maddowblog.com. the ames straw poll in iowa this weekend will not be the biggest 2012 news of the weekend. mitt romney's announcement was stepped on by palin and rudy giuliani. they made sure they were in new hampshire on the day mr. romney was trying to make a splash with their own announcement. it's like wearing white to someone else's wedding. i'm sorry, did i step on your moment. all the republican candidates trying to make a splash with a good showing in the ames-iowa
straw poll will be overshadowed by rick perry making his first appearances in south carolina and new hampshire. the rick perry, soon to be campaign. all though he won't formally say he's running for president, the appearances mean he's running. they do represent the official-unofficial start of his campaign. anybody who sees iowa and the iowa straw poll and pr they might get from doing well in the straw poll as crucial to the campaign, hint, hint, michele bachmann. we'll have more on his candidacy and why it's important in the republican presidential field, we'll have more on that over the course of the week. finally, we have an answer to a campaign finance ministry. ministry, mystery, sorry. a million dollar donation to mitt romney.
michael isikoff reported the contribution came from a company calls w. span llc created in march. it donated the money in april and was dissolved in july. who did the money come from? it's impossible to find out from public recordkeeping. it's the point. they can take unlimited money from companies and companies can form and dissolve without leaving a trace. michael isikoff 's reporting caused them to come forward. i will request that restore our future pac to disclose me as the donor. the donor is edward con ard. he gave the maximum donation by law, 2500 bucks.
>> i think the whole controversy with regards to his contribution disappears. he came forward and said he was the contributor. >> wouldn't it be awesome if it disappeared. interestingly, when we called the family foundation office to follow up on the statement about the donation, the person who picked up the phone answered by saying hello bain capital. it's where mitt romney made millions of dollars that he did not inherit. one former bain executive is behind this donation to mitt romney's pac, the finance laws in the past couple years means if bain the corporation or any other bain executive wants to give 1 million or 10 million or $100 million to try to elect